Watermelon Vodka Cocktail Recipe

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Vodka Watermelon Cocktails are the perfect summer drink, and this recipe is ready for your next party! Tangy lime juice helps balance the sweet summer watermelon for the best flavor you could ask for from a summer cocktail. 

Summertime and all its fun is here, y'all. Officially-unofficially!

We've just had serious fun in Virginia Beach for Memorial Day this past weekend with family and this yummy watermelon cocktail was a huge, huge hit alongside my godmother's delicious cooking and my husband's legendary smoked brisket.

watermelon cocktail garnished with a watermelon slice, fresh mint, and limes

It's such a refreshing drink, it was gone in the blink of an eye and I had to whip up more; so you know this is the drink to sip on this summer.

In fact, I used watermelon agua fresca as the base of this recipe. It's almost identical, but the agua fresca is nonalcoholic and isn't fizzy. It's a great mocktail version of this recipe that travels well and is perfect for the kids.

So this is how easy to make a nice big pitcher of vodka watermelon cocktail is: use fresh watermelon (or store-bought watermelon juice) with fresh squeezed lime juice and sweetener, a good splash of vodka, and some fizzy goodness with ginger beer, club soda, or even sprite!

This quick and easy to make cocktail is ideal on a hot summer day! Garnish with mint and a watermelon slices for the perfect cocktail at your next bbq.

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Equipment

Blender or food processor - chop the fruit into watermelon chunks and toss them into a blender to make puree for the cocktail.

fine mesh strainer - You'll need to strain the pulp from your fresh watermelon juice, so a sieve is a must

cocktail shaker or pitcher - if you're only making two cocktails, the shaker is the way to go. For a crowd, use the pitcher.

Key Ingredients for Watermelon Vodka Cocktails

Full ingredients, measurements, and printable instructions are in the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

  • A large watermelon - we want a large, sweet seedless watermelon. You can use store-bought watermelon juice if you can't find any good watermelons in your area.
  • Fresh lime juice - fresh is best, but bottled lime juice can be used.
  • Fizzy soda - club soda, lemon lime soda, or even ginger beer are welcome here. I love a fizzy cocktail!
  • Vodka - use the vodka you like best, but I do have some suggestions below.
a view of a glass of watermelon cocktail garnished with a sprig of mint, a viola flower, a slice of watermelon, and lime slices

Top Vodkas to Use in Watermelon Cocktails

  1. Ketel One Vodka: This premium vodka is made from 100% non-GMO grain and distilled in copper pot stills, resulting in a smooth and crisp flavor profile.
  2. Tito's Handmade Vodka: This award-winning vodka is made from corn and is naturally gluten-free. Its smooth, clean taste makes it a great choice for watermelon cocktails, as it doesn't overpower the fruit's flavor.
  3. Grey Goose Vodka: Made with high-quality French wheat and distilled five times, Grey Goose has a rich, velvety texture and a subtle sweetness. It pairs well with watermelon's sweetness.

How to Choose a Great Summer Watermelon

When looking for a whole watermelon at the grocery store, in the field, or on the back of the truck on the side of the road, you want to make sure that you get a delicious, ripe watermelon. Here are my top five tips for the perfect melon every time.

  1. A great watermelon has a symmetrical, round shape and dull skin. A long watermelon is a watery one, and a shiny rind is an unripe melon.
  2. Look for a yellow field spot on the underside of the watermelon. This is where the fruit rested on the ground while it was growing. A large creamy, yellow field spot indicates that the watermelon had enough time in the warm summer sun to grow and ripen.
  3. Hold the melon in your hand and give the fruit a tap with your other hand. If you hear a deep, hollow sound that vibrates through the whole thing, it's a good sign that the fruit is ripe.
  4. A ripe watermelon should feel heavy for its size, full of juice. Pick up a few melons and choose the heaviest one.
  5. Look for scratched, webbed parts of the rind. We call those 'bee stings'; they're a sign of a very sweet watermelon.

Make this Refreshing Watermelon Vodka Cocktail 

watermelon chunks and water in a blender

Step 1 | Scoop the flesh of the fruit into watermelon chunks. Place the juice of the lime and watermelon in a blender with fresh water, blending the watermelon until it is smooth.

fresh watermelon water in a pitcher

Step 2 | Strain the watermelon puree through the fine mesh sieve into a pitcher with ice(if making for a crowd) or into a cocktail shaker with a small handful of ice.

a pitcher of a watermelon drink is garnished with many mint sprigs and lemon slices

Step 3 | If making a pitcher for a crowd: stir in the soda water and vodka, then garnish with fresh mint.

OR

Step 3 | If making in the cocktail shaker, add in the vodka and shake vigorously for 30 seconds, then strain into your cocktail glass. Top with soda and garnish with a watermelon slice, mint sprigs, edible flowers, you name it.

Variations and Substitutions

Swap the vodka for white rum if that's your go-to drink choice.

Add in other fresh juices: orange juice, cranberry juice, or other juices can add complimentary fresh flavors to your cocktail.

Pro Tips

  • Use a good, ripe watermelon. If you find that the watermelon isn't as sweet as you'd like, make a simple syrup!
  • Use a good quality vodka. A high-quality vodka will have a smooth, clean flavor that will not overpower the watermelon flavor.
  • Don't be afraid to experiment with different flavors. Watermelon pairs well with a variety of different fruits and flavors, so feel free to add your own twist to the classic watermelon vodka cocktail.
a glass of vodka watermelon cocktail garnished with limes and a watermelon slice

Storage and Reheating

This cocktail will keep for a day in the fridge, so make it a day ahead without the soda, and stir to combine the ingredients before topping with the fizziness and serving over ice cubes. Perfect for summer parties!

FAQs

When is watermelon season?

Fresh watermelon is in season from May to September in the U.S.

What can I use if I don't have a cocktail shaker?

A mason jar with a lid works perfectly if you don't have a cocktail shaker. If you're making it for a crowd, a cocktail shaker isn't necessary at all.

Can I use bottled lime juice?

You can use bottled lime juice in this recipe but because it can be more tart than fresh lime, you may want to adjust the amount.

More Refreshing Summer Cocktails and Mocktails

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📖 Recipe

a glass of vodka watermelon cocktail garnished with limes and a watermelon slice

Watermelon Vodka Cocktail

Eden Westbrook
Vodka Watermelon Cocktails are the perfect summer drink, and this recipe is ready for your next party! Tangy lime juice helps balance the sweet summer watermelon for the best flavor you could ask for from a summer cocktail. 
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Course Drinks
Cuisine American
Servings 8 servings
Calories 337 kcal

Ingredients
  

For a Crowd

  • 8 cups watermelon chunks
  • 3 cups water
  • Juice of 3 limes
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 cups vodka
  • 12 ounces club soda ginger beer, or lemon-lime soda
  • Ice for serving

Instructions
 

  • Place the watermelon, water, lime juice, and sugar (if using), into the blender. Blend on medium-high speed until smooth.
  • Place a fine mesh sieve over a pitcher and pour the watermelon puree through the strainer into the pitcher with ice.
  • Stir the vodka into the watermelon juice, then top with the soda water. Stir again.
  • Serve cold and garnish cocktails with fresh mint, a watermelon slice, and lime slices.

Notes

Watermelon Cocktails for Two

Use 1 cup watermelon chunks, ½ cup water, the juice of 1 lime, 3 ounces of vodka, and 6 ounces of soda.

Pro Tips

Use a good, ripe watermelon. If you find that the watermelon isn't as sweet as you'd like, make a simple syrup!
  • Use a good quality vodka. A high-quality vodka will have a smooth, clean flavor that will not overpower the watermelon flavor.
  • Don't be afraid to experiment with different flavors. Watermelon pairs well with a variety of different fruits and flavors, so feel free to add your own twist to the classic watermelon vodka cocktail.

Storage and Reheating

This cocktail will keep for a day in the fridge, so make it a day ahead without the soda, and stir to combine the ingredients before topping with the soda and serving over ice cubes. Perfect for summer parties!

Nutrition

Serving: 1gCalories: 337kcalCarbohydrates: 54gProtein: 1gSodium: 33mgFiber: 1gSugar: 49g
Tried this recipe?Leave a star rating and let us know!

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